Rules set for grace period on loans due within lockdown period

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 1) — Loans due within the enhanced community quarantine period can now be settled a month after their respective due dates.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez signed on Wednesday the implementing rules and regulations of the "Bayanihan to Heal As One Act" provision mandating a 30-day grace period on loans falling due during the enhanced community quarantine period.

Dominguez said that under the IRR, all loans with principal and/or interest due within the lockdown period may be settled 30 days after without additional interest, penalties, fees, and other charges.

Pawnshop loans and credit card payments are also included, Dominguez added.

The grace period shall also be be extended if President Rodrigo Duterte extends the enhanced community quarantine period. The IRR notes that the current quarantine runs from March 17 to April 12, 2020.

The implementing rules also cover "other financial institutions under the supervision of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and Cooperative Development Authority, whether public or private, including the Government Service Insurance System, Social Security System and Pag-IBIG Fund."

Covered institutions are prohibited from requiring their clients to waive the application of the 30-day grace period and other provisions of the "Bayanihan to Heal as One Act."

Waivers covering payments within the enhanced community quarantine period will also not be valid, the implementing rules prescribe.

However, borrowers may still opt to pay their loans and fees due within the enhanced community quarantine period.

Pag-IBIG sets moratorium until June

In a related move, the Pag-IBIG has placed a three-month moratorium on loans from March 16 to June 15, 2020, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles announced Wednesday.

The moratorium also covers other government-owned and -controlled corporations under the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development, of which Pag-IBIG is part.

"This measure will benefit 5,521,611 Pag-IBIG member borrowers and beneficiaries of the housing programs of these agencies and covers an aggregate amount of ₱31.4 billion in amortization payments due for the three month period," Nograles said.

Borrowers shall not be charged additional interest or penalties for not paying their loans within the moratorium.